Learning, Teaching and Assessment

School Vision:

“A community built on strong relationships and a commitment to success”

School Values:

The learning environment should promote our values:

Respect * Inclusion * Excellence * Resilience * Honesty


· Learning and engagement

o We create an ethos and culture that reflects our commitment for mutual respect, honesty and positive relationships. The learners experience is inclusive for all and well matched to their needs and interests.

· Quality of teaching

o We ensure our teaching underpins our school vision and values, developing the learners’ resilience and supporting them to strive for excellence.

· Effective use of assessment

o This is integral to our planning of learning and teaching. There are shared expectations for the standard to be achieved and robust arrangements for moderation across stages and the curriculum to ensure success through reliable evidence.

· Planning, tracking and monitoring

o As a result of manageable processes to monitor and evaluate learners’ progress we can be confident we have clear information on their attainment across the curriculum. This data enables appropriate interventions in place to ensure success.


At Balerno we aim to create a positive and inclusive learning environment with pupils experiencing a consistently high quality learning experience which is motivating and meaningful. Our approaches should provide appropriate support, pace and challenge for all learners, and ensure that tasks and resources are matched to individual needs. Teaching for effective learning is based on AifL principles and characterised by planned opportunities for:

o Independent learning

o Learners taking responsibility for learning

o Active learning

o Collaborative learning

o Application of learning and skills development

What might learning & teaching look like in our classes?

· Staff and pupils have positive relationships and there is a culture of mutual respect

· Lessons are well planned and include a range of methodologies

· Lessons include a range if ‘Assessment is for learning’ techniques

· Lessons include pace and challenge

· Learning is differentiated to meet the needs of all learners

· There is a review at the end of a lesson


We are committed to the principles that the main purpose of assessment is to improve outcomes for learners.

Effective use of assessment by staff and learners ensures pupils maximise their successes and achievements.

The purpose and principles of assessment are:

· To involve, engage and support learners in their learning

· To ensure progression in learning is in line with expectations that are appropriate to the learner

· To summarise and share progress with the learner and parent/carer

· To plan appropriate next steps in learning which meet individual learner’s needs and identify how to get there.

· To involve the learner in the tracking of progress and setting personal targets.

When planning for assessment staff should use key resources such as:

· Experiences and outcomes – to provide guidance on experiences for BGE learners

· Benchmarks – to provide guidance on the standard against which to assess in the BGE

· SQA website – to provide guidance on understanding standards, course updates and advice

When should assessment take place?

Assessment and planning should take into account the individual needs and preferences of the learner and recognise young people progress in different ways. Information provided by Support for Learning should also be taken into account when planning personalised support for identified pupils.